A farmer near Bowling Green, Ohio plants soybeans using a no-till drill. Untilled soil stores more carbon. 
Credit: J.D. Pooley / AP

A new kind of food may soon be arriving on grocery store shelves: climate smart. Under the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities, a nascent U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) program, this amalgam of farming methods aims to keep the American agricultural juggernaut steaming ahead while slashing the sector’s immense greenhouse gas footprint.

This spring, the Biden administration began allocating $3.1 billion to hundreds of agriculture organizations, corporations, universities, and nonprofits for climate-smart projects. These entities will pass most of the money on to tens of thousands of farmers, ranchers, and forest owners, including growers who manage thousands of acres and underserved and disadvantaged farmers who often have much smaller operations. The first agreements have now been signed; the money is starting to flow.

The USDA estimates that the 141 funded projects will, collectively over the project’s five-year lifetime, eliminate or sequester the equivalent of 60 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions, on par with removing more than […]

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